He grew up in a family interested in cultural and artistic matters. After one year as a private teacher in the vicinity of Kristiansand he began to work as a journalist (1920-30). He became an accomplished theater critic (1924-25 and 1926-41) and worked for the public radio as well (1928-31). He then shifted positions and joined the Gyldendal publishing house as a secretary (1930-42 and 1945-46), and when director Harald Grieg was arrested (1941-42) he was in charge to keep the business going. At the same time, he was an active member of the civil resistance movement.